GRADES SKILL PLAYERS CLASS OF 2005

Here is a position by position analysis of the recently completed recruiting class of 2005 by the University of Cincinnati. In grading Coach Mark Dantonio's second recruiting class, we'll analyze the players first; give a quality grade for each position, then a quantity grade. This is for the Skill Positions only.

The quality grade is based on the caliber of athlete the Bearcats got for each position and the quantity grade is based on how the Bearcats did in meeting their needs.

I first will look at the offensive side of the ball.

QUARTERBACK: The Bearcats lose one of their all-time greats in Gino Guidugli. They signed three quarterbacks plus have another one in the fold from a transfer. The staff looked at needs for the upcoming season and also down the road. Each quarterback is different than the other but one thing is for certain, this class may be the best class of quarterbacks to head to Cincinnati ever.

Nick Davila: The Alta Loma, California product is a two-time junior college All-American and will be expected to fight for the starting job from day one. The left handed signal caller has passed for 5,774 yards and 46 touchdowns the past two seasons. Grade: A

Craig Carey: Playing at one of Ohio's top prep programs, Carey had to wait his turn before getting the chance to show his quarterback wears. Athletic and mobile, Carey is the steal of the Midwest. While I look at Carey being more of a true passer, he's athletic enough to avoid the rush and make plays. Carey passed for 1,875 yards and hit on 55% of his passes. But don't be fooled, Carey can run if needed. This past season Carey rushed for 507 yards. While everyone was looking at Ohio State recruit Rob Schoenhoft, Carey worked his wears and caught the interest of quarterback guru Walt Harris of Pittsburgh. Until Harris left Pittsburgh many felt Carey was leaning towards the Panthers. This is a great pick-up for the Bearcats. Grade: A+

Dominick Goodman: High School All-American who helped his high school win Ohio's "Big School" championship. Goodman is an option quarterback who's a great athlete. While he didn't have to use his arm at the high school level, don't be fooled. Goodman is a great athlete and threw the ball when needed in high school. If Goodman wins the quarterback job look for the Bearcats to use the spread like West Virginia does. For those who have seen former quarterback Rasheed Marshall play, Goodman can control a game with his feet and hit a receiver when needed. Grade: A

David Wees: An athletic quarterback who played out of the shotgun in high school. Able to run the quarterback draw to perfection and is also very good running the option. While David is an athlete he's also good a strong arm. David is very good in space and runs the play action as good as anyone. While David doesn't have the speed of Goodman, very few college quarterbacks do.

QUALITY GRADE A+: While these three didn't receive much talk about being the tops in this class, don't be fooled. Each player brings tools that the Bearcat staff can use to win games. Underrated group that Bearcat fans will enjoy watching during the next few seasons. As I said, this group answers needs for the upcoming season and also down the road.

QUANTITY GRADE A+: While I'm surprised that the Bearcats took three quarterbacks in this class, the fact that two of the three could play other positions allow them to bring in top athletes and allow them to find their place. You also can't forget about transfer David Wess. Wess was one of the top quarterbacks in the Class of 2004. The Minnesota transfer gives the Bearcat several options and will allow for great competition at the position.

 

RUNNING BACK: Not a great need for the Bearcats in this class. With returning players Bradley Glatthaar and Butler Benton, the Bearcats are strong at the position. When you add Delbert Ferguson into the mix the strength is apparent. While the official list totals only two running backs, the fact remains that a player like Cedric Tolbert also was a top high school back.

Marshwan Gilyard: A speed back with great balance and a sudden burst. Look for Gilyard to be a factor on special teams. With size and speed Gilyard saw a great junior year create interest from many. Anytime you can go into Florida and take one of the top overall athletes you have to give credit. Will give the Bearcats a deep pool of talent to call upon. Grade: A

Marcus Waugh: Played at a very good high school program. Could play on both sides of the ball and excel. Look for Waugh to first be looked at from a fullback position. If that doesn't work a move to linebacker could come. Because of his ability to play two positions the Bearcats were able to take the Toledo St. Johns product. Grade: B

Quality Grade B: Gilyard is a great athlete and will at least be a factor on special teams. Waugh could see playing time at fullback this season. The fullback position is one that is young, and Waugh is a higher quality prospect then the others on the roster.

Quantity B: Not surprised by the Bearcats only taking two backs. Not a great need with the young depth already on the roster. But both are above average prospects and could also play other positions.

WIDE RECEIVER: The Bearcats will bring in two receivers with different tools. Both could play on both sides of the ball, but will start on the offensive side. At this time the Bearcats have several young and talented receivers coming up. Several with height over 6'1".

Jared Martin: Great athlete who played quarterback in high school. Coach's son who understands the game. Great speed on a frame over six foot. Grade: B

Derrick Stewart: Another athlete that will see a chance on special teams. Stewart has great feet and balance and is a play maker. While he's less than six feet, Stewart will come in and compete from day one. Grade: B+

Quality Grade B: Martin is a sleeper that the staff keep under the radar with an early offer and commitment. Stewart is a player that was left behind in a deep class of receivers in Ohio.

Quantity Grade B: Wasn't a major need in this class. Martin could play on the defensive side if needed. Stewart will pay off on special teams early.

TIGHT END: This is were the Bearcats may have stole two of the best overall athletes in the country. Both players can catch and run. Look for these two players to be bookends for the next four seasons.

Kazeem Alli: Special is all I have to say about Kazeem. Receiver in a tight ends body. Can make the hard catch and get positive yards after the catch. Will need to add weight for blocking assignments in the Big East. Basketball player who's only played football for a couple of years. Gives the Bearcats the ability to spread the field while keeping help on the line. Grade: A+

Connor Barwin: Monster with great athletic ability. Has a great body with great athletic ability. Another receiver trapped in a tight end body. Will go up and get the ball and is tough as nails. Bearcat fans are going to be surprised by his ability. Grade A+

Quality Grade A+: Both of these players are "Big Time" players. Both have the ability to grow into NFL type players. Once you see film of these two, you will see what the coaching staff and I are so excited about what the future holds for these two men.

Quantity Grade A+: While the Bearcats have some strong underclass tight ends, the ability to use these two players as extra wide receivers will allow for the offensive staff to spread the field even more. Both players are athletes and not just big bodies that can catch the ball here and there.

Are you surprised by the grades I gave out for the offensive skill recruits? Don't be. This group will allow the Bearcats to compete in the Big East and on a national level. Put all the star ratings to the side and wait till you see each of these players highlight tapes. Bearcat Insider is right now down loading tape on all of the new Bearcats.

Talk about these Bearcats on the Bearcat Football board.

 


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